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Irascible Bryzgalov mum on compatriot Varlamov: What began as a dubious season now has taken on a postseason spotlight.
17 апреля 2014 года. Chambers, Mike. Denver Post

Ilya Bryzgalov on Wednesday flashed the kind of personality that could make most of us feel good about our worst mood. Argumentative, insincere and unpleasant aptly describes Bryzgalov after Minnesota's practice.

The well-traveled goalie, who will start Thursday for the Minnesota Wild in Game 1 of its first-round playoff series against the Avalanche, told the first reporter to approach him that he would not grant interviews until after the series. Presumably joking, Bryzgalov was again asked a question and he became combative. He did not want to comment on opposing his Russian countryman Semyon Varlamov, the Avs' star who is a candidate to win the Hart (NHL MVP) and Vezina (best goalie) trophies.

Eventually, after the Wild's media chief listened in, Bryzgalov said: "Nothing to say about (it). I play not against the Varlamov. I play against the Colorado Avalanche, whole team."

Bryzgalov, who has played 12 games with Minnesota since being acquired from Edmonton at last month's trade deadline, previously played for Anaheim, Phoenix and Philadelphia. The Flyers used a compliance buyout worth $23 million last summer to part ways with Bryzgalov, who began the season without a contract.

Philadelphia signed Bryzgalov to a nine-year, $51 million deal in 2011, and after two turbulent seasons with the goalie, the Flyers paid two-thirds of his remaining $34.5 million salary for him to walk away.

"He's come in here with a different personality, no question, but he's shown his teammates that he's committed to them," Wild coach Mike Yeo said. "It's not like there's been ever a situation or an instance where's he's been a distraction or tried to do anything other than fit into this group."

Wild forward Matt Cooke said of Bryzgalov, "I think he's a lot smarter than people give him credit for."

Bryzgalov swept the Avs out of the 2006 playoffs when he was with Anaheim. In that second-round series, he allowed only four goals and had two shutouts.
Credit: By Mike Chambers, The Denver Post 
Страничка Ильи Брызгалова на сайте "Звёзды с Востока"


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